“Freeze Zone” by Elizabeth C. Gorski – 13:22
Hi everyone. Welcome to the party!
Theme: 61A. [Hot weather refuge, and this puzzle’s theme] – COOLING CENTER. “ICE” is straddling the two words of each theme answer. Pretty cool. You know what you can ICE? A birthday cake! With ICE cream!
22A. [Congressional debate topic] – PUBLIC EXPENDITURE
30A. [One on a mission] – DIPLOMATIC ENVOY
52A. [Freudian force] – PSYCHIC ENERGY
79A. [“King Lear” and “Othello” have them] – TRAGIC ENDINGS. Spoiler alert!
98A. [Peary and Amundsen, e.g.] – ARCTIC EXPLORERS. I had COOLING CENTER and ARCTIC and thought all the answers would start with a cold word. Brrr.
110A. [Cling Free target] – STATIC ELECTRICITY
14D. [Sight-restoring innovations] – BIONIC EYES. We can rebuild him. We have the technology.
68D. [Pricey gift for Yo-Yo Ma] – AMATI CELLO
10A. [301, to Diocletian] – CCCI/20A. [Small batteries] – AAAS/10D. [Battery terminals] – CATHODES/11D. [___ City, Philippines] – CAUAYAN/12D. [Haul] – CART. I’m thinking the rows of CAs is a shoutout to me on my birthday: Crossword Addicted, CAnadian Chartered Accountant. Thanks, Elizabeth!
27A. [New parent, for one] – NAMER. Andrea Carla Michaels, for another.
92A. [Mrs. Malaprop, vis-a-vis language] – MISUSER. I think she is a misabuser of language.
114A. [Buffalo’s county] – ERIE. We don’t see ERIE enough in puzzles.
115A. [Shade garden staples] – HOSTAS. We see too much of HOSTAS in puzzles.
117A. [Paul Anka’s “___ Beso”] – ESO. The first Justin Bieber. Just ask the Ottawa Citizen.
1D. [Overly excited] – AMPED. Yes, I am amped. And stoked. And jazzed.
6D. [“Battlestar Galactica” prequel] – CAPRICA. That is the remake version, so it could be called a sequel prequel.
37D. [Encyclopedia start] – VOLUME ONE. They should come out with a version that starts with volume two. It would drive people nuts looking for the missing book.
42D. [Petunia, for one] – PIG. Wikipedia says that “she looks much like her boyfriend, Porky Pig, except that she wears a dress and has braided black hair.” This isn’t a Dame Edna/Barry Humphries thing, is it?
48D. [Unisex] – HISORHERS. That’s an odd word. Oh, HIS OR HERS. Much better.
64D. [One of the “Big Four” record companies] – EMI. Sony, Universal and Warner are the other three.
66D. [Letters on Gagarin’s helmet] – CCCP. Again with the CCC.
67D. [Loose-fitting garment] – HAREM PANTS. Can’t touch this!
76D. [Estonia and Latvia, formerly: Abbr.] – SSRS. In the formerly CCCP.
80D. [Youngest son of Arthur and Molly Weasley] – RON. Older brothers are brothers, Bill, Charlie, Percy, twins Fred and George. Also has a younger sister, Ginny. First big hit was One Bad Apple.
87D. [Moment of silence?] – DEAD AIR. Better fix your 89D. [Radio buttons] – PRESETS
94D. [YouTube uploads] – VIDEOS. Never heard of it.
96D. [Bilingual Muppet on “Sesame Street”] – ROSITA. I tried Swedish Chef, but he is unilingual.
104D. [“Gypsy” composer] – STYNE
This is my 70th puzzle blogged here since August 2009. It’s been a great year. Thanks Amy, for the opportunity, and thanks to all of you for reading (and I hope you have forgiven me for April 1).
Thanks for the writeup. Did not get into a groove on this one, although I did like it as I went.
Have a very happy birthday today Jeffrey.
Happy birthday, Jeffrey! I liked this puzzle…slowed down in spots, but no real stumpers. Plus, bionics.
Happy birthday, Jeffrey! So glad to have you on board.
Happy birthday! Are birthdays like Thanksgiving — is your American birthday in two weeks or something?
Long day of editing. So I’m late to say Happy BD to Jeffrey (Cross Can). Puzzle fell quite nicely. Loved the writeup. Ready for the weekend, I hope!
Happy Birthday! – got this in just under the wire in the Pacific Zone!